1. #1
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Mar 2007

    Default FTIR, GC/MS, Raman spectroscopy instruments

    I saw the 4 gas thread with a lot of helpful comments and thought there might be a need to start some discussion about some solid/liquid instruments and technology since there seems to be a lot happening in this area.

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Jan 2008

    Default Seek advice before buying

    It is frustrating, as a taxpayer, seeing all these toys hitting the market, with vendors/salespeople going after departments receiving HS dollars to make quick sales. There are some good instruments and poor, and a lot of claims being made that cannot be guaranteed and have not been validated. As a chemist, it amazes me that the performance of these new instruments from new vendors differs (unfavorably, usually) to the performance of companies that have been in the business for decades. Just 10 years ago, raman spectroscopy was a fringe experiment because it was a weak effect and it took an awfully sophisticated instrument to do this experiment well. Now we see little handhelds hitting the streets with very limited testing. What I would like to see each and every department to do is seek advice from voluntary chemists at your State's public health lab (they have no dogs in this fight) for advice and partnership. There are vendors out there hiring fire fighters and HazMat techs on commission to sell their products. I'm sorry, it's an outright conflict of interest.

  3. #3
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Oct 2006


    We have a Smith Klein portable IR spec on our rig. First, I should state, no HS money went to this purchase as we are private industry.

    We like our unit very much. It is deconable and user friendly. We can 'teach' it what we have on onsite and input all the relevant MSDS data. Is it perfect, nope. But it is a good tool to get you started on the process. We have our Hazcat kit, but it does not come out nearly as often as it used to for actual chemical incidents.

    Yes, you should talk to people prior to buying one, but they are great tool in our arsenal of equipment.

    I can ID, or come pretty close to the substance within 30 seconds vs ~10 minutes for a Hazcat or 5 Step ID. Yeah, it is expensice, but where I am in, time is of the utmost importance. If I shut down a building for an hour, it is ~500,000. 9 minutes can save a ton of money on our hazard determination.

    My thoughts,

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